Friday, December 21, 2007

The Dust Bunnies Tried to Revolt!

So I finally had to clean the living room. The dust bunnies were sporting tattoos and gang apparel.

I'm wondering, though -- does anyone else have the habit of picking up little pieces of dust, crumbs, et cetera from surfaces and then deliberately depositing them onto the floor just for the satisfaction of watching the vacuum suck them up?

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

WARNING: For Women Only

I don't even know how to preface this. So I'll just say, "Ladies, this one is for you..."

(Thanks to Sarah for turning me on to this absolutely disgusting, but hilarious, website.)

Sunday, November 18, 2007

I hate coffee tables

I really do.

I hate those things.

They take up space in living rooms across the world, space that could be better utilized, in my humble opinion.

Take, for instance, the coffee table in our house.

It's a nice coffee table, as far as coffee tables go. (It's oak, though... blech. I'm not a big oak fan. Give me cherry or mahogany. Not oak.) It even has two "tiers", so we can use the bottom part for books, magazines and our growing assortment of cars, dinosaurs and stuffed animals.

But I still find the thing repulsive.

Maybe it's the shape. Rectangular. How... quaint.

I mean, at least an oval one would be somewhat eye-catching. No right angles. Just smooth. Round. Fluid. Or how about some bizarre shape, like a hand or a toilet bowl or a fish. ANYTHING but a rectangle.

I tried to hide our coffee table the last time we moved our furniture, tried to sneak it into a corner so it wouldn't be the ugly centerpiece it is. But someone wanted it out (that someone is a "he", by the way, and "he" is married to someone in our house) to use as a place to put drinks, dishes, et cetera. And I, being the softie I am, couldn't say no.

I mean, I understand the principle of the coffee table. But we have TV trays. Bring 'em out, set 'em up, put 'em out of sight. Done. Much nicer than a massive piece of furniture that serves no real purpose except to tick me off.

Coffee tables. The scourge of our society.

Monday, October 29, 2007

I know, I know...

... I should write more!

This was my initial blog, but I spend so much time at my other one ( that I end up neglecting this one. But please understand that I will always love my "first born"!

In news of the "boy wonder" kind, my son still hasn't connected with his pre-Kindergarten. I'm now forced (almost two months after starting this journey) to ask myself if the money is worth it.

The problem is that the teachers have to teach to the "lowest common denominator" of sorts. Thus, they are unable to work with kids who are into reading, geography, arts, music, linguistics, math, theatre, et cetera.

I'm beginning to feel as though I'm simply paying this "school" to feed my son lunch and take him to the playground. That makes me a little queasy, to be perfectly honest. After all, that's something I can do myself.

So... what would you do with a child who is obviously not stimulated by pre-Kindergarten? It's the most "academic" one I've found in the area, so if I remove him, we'll just continue to work with him at home. That won't be a problem... but he'll go to Kindergarten next year, and I feel that he'll be even more distanced from his peers than he is now in terms of what he already has learned.

I'm stumped.

One part of me says that he shouldn't be penalized because he's smart. The other part of me says that he has to learn the patience that comes with being "gifted" and having to wait in a classroom sometimes.


I know I sound like a total bitch who is bragging about her son. Please don't leave comments to that extent -- believe me, I don't enjoy this dilemma. Yes, he's intelligent, but it's not something that we like to talk about in front of him. In fact, we don't really dwell on it because I believe a lot of kids have incredible talents -- his just seems to be academic rather than physical or musical.

I'm really stumped.

And here I thought the hardest part about school would be what to send in his lunchbox. Ha.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Mystery Solved!

Today, I solved the mystery of the birthday boy whom my son doesn't seem to know.

Turns out he's in another class and just happens to have friends in my son's class. So the parents felt it was necessary to invite everyone from both classes.

On a separate note, when I met this kid, I was grossed out.

Green-yellow snot ball hanging out of his left nostril. It moved when he spoke. He never seemed to notice it, but it was about as big as a chimichanga.


I can handle a lot of stuff, but "boogers" make me sick.

End result: I think I'll decline, not because of the hygiene thing, but because my son shows no interest in the kid.

(Okay, I'll admit it--the honkin' piece of snot sealed the deal.)

Monday, September 17, 2007


I wasn't surprised when my son announced (after going to school for a few days) that he didn't want to go back.

And I wasn't surprised when the only friends he has discussed were girls (mostly blondes with blue eyes.)

But I was blindsided by the invitation I picked up in his school mailbox. It was to a birthday party for a boy in his class whom neither of us knows.

My son cannot tell me who this kid is, and I've never met him either. So I'm stumped. What the heck is a mom to do?

I suppose I have a few choices, none of which I particularly like:

1. Have my young'un attend the party and treat it as an opportunity to meet other parents while he (hopefully) plays.

2. Call the mother and lie, stating that we cannot make it for one reason or another. (Is saying, "We have to wash the cat..." wrong?)

3. Call the mother and tell the truth--I'm uncomfortable sending my child to a party for a boy just because they have been in the same class together for all of five days.

Motherhood. It's fraught with such bizarre dilemmas. And I can't figure out how to deal with most of them.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Fundraising Rant

Before starting this rant, I'd like to make a few statements:

#1: I believe in fundraising. In fact, I enjoy it... when it's handled correctly and appropriately.
#2: I think that kids are terrific salespeople, but they shouldn't be roped into selling.
#3: I truly like the school my son is attending.

Okay. Now to the rant...

Yesterday, my son started preschool. I was very pleased with everything about the place and he seemed to enjoy himself, though I think he was a tad bit overwhelmed.

But when I looked over the materials that were sent home with him, a coupon book caught my eye. "How nice!" I thought. "They are giving parents and students the chance to save money at local establishments!"

I was wrong.

The coupon book had a "catch". It costs $25. And my son (or, more precisely, my husband and I) has the opportunity to sell these coupon books to his family and friends. The school gets half the profits, which will go toward a new playground.

I was shocked.

First of all, this isn't a nonprofit organization. It's a franchise and it's not inexpensive to send my son there.

Secondly, it was our first day! I would have been more open to the whole notion if it had been approached delicately after we'd been there a while.

Third, I would rather simply give the school the amount (half the book's worth) and be done with it.

Again, let me reiterate that I LIKE this establishment. And I realize that such fundraising is often necessary to keep up a level of quality. I'm just disappointed.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007


dewy kisses
smell of innocence
my son

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Concerned mama

My four-year-old son will begin pre-kindergarten in a couple of weeks. (Incidentally, it used to be called "nursery school" until that term became un-hip.)

He'll be at the school for three half-days each week. When I signed him up in the spring, I thought it would be wonderful for us to have a little time apart in preparation for kindergarten in 2008. During the time away from one another, I could write unpestered and he could socialize with peers.

Now, I'm having second thoughts.

I feel like I'm handing over what I hold most precious to someone else's whims. Though I know his teacher is qualified, that doesn't mean she's perfect. She'll have days when she's feeling moody, times when she wants to scream, and moments where she'll make mistakes.

I, too, am flawed. But I'm his mother. And she's not.

Am I insane? Or is this part of the normal "separation anxiety" felt by parents everywhere?

Thursday, August 2, 2007

chains of conformity

Color in the lines, my sweet--
It's what "good" children do.
They never question,
Never try
To create something new.
You wouldn't want to rock
The boat!
Dear me--
We might all drown!
So stay within the lines,
My pet.
Don't let the others down.

copyright 2007 AHCaffrey

Thursday, July 5, 2007

I must be doing it right

As a parent, I'm always questioning everything I say or do.

"Is this the right path to take?"
"Am I screwing up my son by not allowing him to eat another piece of candy?"
"Will what I'm telling this kid today turn into a mom-bashing session with his therapist when he's 30?"

However, today I was assured that I'm doing something right.

My adorable, wonderful, sweet little almost-four-year-old told me the names of his perfect parents: His Daddy (yea!) and His NANA (aka, my mother). My role in this little fantasy was as "a girl who lived next door."

Oh, the joys of parenthood.

But I chose the role of "bad cop" for a reason... and I guess I'm seeing the predictable results!

[ Incidentally, his dessert wasn't docked after I learned he wished I wasn't his mommy. I figure I'll have other opportunities to mess with his head... ]

Sunday, July 1, 2007

Hershey's Kisses

I haven't eaten chocolate for over 11 years.


No chocolate milk. No chocolate bunnies. No chocolate kisses. No chocolate anything.

I repeat: Nothing.

I don't even miss it, nor do I crave it. I don't care if I smell it, I don't care if someone else eats it in front of me, and I don't mind passing up on it.

So. Am I still a chocoholic, as I was before I gave it up? hmm. Is it a real condition or a silly excuse for people to consume mass quantities of the good stuff?

Just wondering aloud tonight.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

The Mavericks

I had the wonderful opportunity today to read Shakespeare's "Hamlet" aloud with about 15 other thespians.

It was incredible.

We (and a handful of others) want to organize a new theatre group in our community. Dedicated purely to performing bare bones, thought-provoking, depressing-ending plays, we are hoping to change the face of theatre in our community. No Oklahoma! or Annie for us.

Instead, we'll delve into the biggies. O'Neill. Ibsen. Stuff that kids are forced to read in college but which they normally cannot hope to understand until they have more life experiences... or see it performed well by actors who care about the words more than they care about set designs, costumes, or, dare I say it, box office figures.

We want to bring raw, scarred, imperfectly perfect theatre alive.

Will our plan work? We have no clue.

But it doesn't matter.

We're not beautiful. We're not model-material. But we're dang good actors. And we just want to present some plays that few people have the opportunity to see without heading to a big city or renting a DVD.

Wish our band of mavericks good fortune as we set off on this rocky, wild journey.

Friday, June 22, 2007

An Open Letter to Parents of Young Children

Dear Parents of Very Young Kids:

I will keep this note short and sweet, attempting to avoid too much emotion. However, I feel it's necessary to make this plea:

I beg of you,

As the Mommy of an almost-four-year-old, it's troubling to see his playmates waddling around, filled to the brim with sugar, fat, and goodness knows what other garbage. Cakes, chips, and candy should be treats, not staples. Sure, they taste great. But they are ideally meant to be consumed in extreme moderation.

(NOTE: If you can't stop yourself from eating them, don't have them around. I haven't ingested chocolate since January 1996 because I couldn't control myself and would wolf down a pound of M&Ms like it was my last meal.)

And please don't fall back on "s/he has big bones", "everybody in our family has weight issues," or "I'm sure it's a medical problem though the doctors haven't discovered the problem yet." In 99% of cases, not one of those excuses holds water as well as a rusted colander would.

Don't just do this for me. Do this for them. Because other kids are going to be mean.

I know.

I was a chubbette from about age seven until age thirteen. It was horrible. It was embarrassing. And two decades later, taunt starters such as, "Look at fatty..." and "You're fatter than..." still haunt me.

But enough of me. Let's talk about you and your family. After all, it's summertime in the northern hemisphere! So go out and get some exercise.

Munch on apples, carrots, oranges... produce is so incredibly delicious, especially when shared with family!

Make healthy meals together, avoid the fast food windows, and please, oh, please, think twice before allowing TV watching to become a time of mindless noshing.

That is all.

Healthily yours,

The Quoibler

Monday, June 18, 2007

Friend... or Foe?

Alli = Anal Leakage.

Is being thin really worth experiencing panties "au jus"? Does the embarrassment of uncontrollable bowels pale in comparison to being just a few pounds lighter?

I'm not usually a conspiracy theorist, but I'm starting to wonder if the makers of Alli and Depends Undergarments are in cahoots.

Until this blows over, I'm only riding in elevators alone. Goodness knows what an unexpected "blast" could do in such a cramped environment.

Friday, June 8, 2007

Blood and Gore

At the gym today, I was mulling over some people I know who seem to take great pleasure in regaling me with other individuals' pain and distress.

Specifically, I'm speaking of those folks who cannot simply tell me, "So-and-so passed away," but feel the need to tell me (in gory detail) about how his nose bled right after he kicked the bucket or he fouled himself and the smell permeated the air or his face was contorted in agony and scared even the paramedics. Enough already! I get the picture!

And I am not aiming this at my dear friends with whom sharing some horrific details might be acceptable in an "I have to talk with someone about this" way. I'm speaking about those people I barely know who feel compelled to be... well... unnecessarily detailed about gory subject matters.

What causes this need to pick over others' misery or to describe the ugliness of a moment? Is it an avoidance of one's own problems? Or could it be something else, something deeper, something disturbing that's buried in our human psyche?

I wonder.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

I've Become "One of Them"

I always mocked the folks who took their cell phones everywhere and anywhere. I imagined them sleeping with the things, cuddling up and kissing them goodnight. My attitude was, "That's so pathetic!"

Then, I lost my cell phone on Monday.

The world changed.

Suddenly, I felt naked, scared, confused. I couldn't get in touch with anyone. I tried to find it, but it was gone. It had disappeared in the garden center of a home improvement store. All was not right with the universe.

Yesterday, I got a new cell phone, one with a camera (which I said I'd never do). I loved it. I gently massaged it. I walked around with it. I held it tight. I took it into the bathroom with me. I never let it out of my sight.

This morning, it occurred to me that I have, indeed, become "one of them."

Oh, well.

Wait... is that a ring tone I hear...?

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Seinfeld-Inspired Thoughts...

Sometimes, I'm just baffled by mundane things...

- Why do we order supersized cheeseburgers, fries, and a DIET soda?

- Why do we know how to parent everyone else's kids but our own?

- Why are graying men described as "distinguished" while graying women are simply called "old"?


Friday, April 20, 2007

Naughty Thoughts

Is it just me, or would any other parent like to hear Elmo lose it?

I know he's a puppet (or muppet... or living challenged monster... or whatever the PC term may be...), but some days I just long to hear him start swearing. I want him to throw stuff around, tell the bizarre and annoying Mr. Noodle to go to hell, and angrily stomp out of the scene.

It's just a dream, I know. But wouldn't you pay money to witness such a meltdown? I know I'd be in for a fiver...

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

The Quoibles of Humanity

I am constantly amazed by our American society.

In the same breath, someone will literally say, "Isn't that horrible about the VT shootings... and can you believe Sanjaya is still on American Idol?!?"

People are glued to their TV sets, but not to hear how we can help the victims' families of the latest massacre; instead, they are completely rapt by images of warbling teens all vying for the exciting chance to be verbally abused by Simon Cowell.

When did we become so strangely possessed with the ability to immediately disassociate from national tragedies? When did a fleeting moment of fame on a surreal show surpass what really matters in life?

I guarantee you that most families aren't using the VT incident as a chance to have in-depth, heartfelt discussions with one another in an effort to cool some of the angst that grips our youth. No, they are gathered together with their loved ones, silently watching wannabes sing weakened versions of rock and blues tunes. Nary a word will be shared between them, save, "Isn't she awful tonight?" or "Let's try to call this week!"

Am I the only one who finds this troubling?

Tuesday, April 10, 2007


When is it that "unmentionables" became... well... mentionable?

I'm specifically talking about women's monthly "visitors". For some reason, females have come to believe that they can discuss their menstruation frequently (and loudly) to anyone, anytime, anywhere.

Isn't this supposed to be private?

I understand that it's a natural thing. So are boils and goiters. Want to hear about them from a stranger on the bus?

I'm not talking about girlfriends privately gabbing with their closest buddies, either. I've met gals only to be given detailed descriptions of the volume, color, and frequency of their flows moments after our introduction. Huh?!? I don't even know what they do for a living, and I'm already privy to the fact that they're ovulating?!?

Ladies. Please. Think.

Tampon ads may be all over the airwaves and panty liners are so commonplace they're practically next to the candy aisle at the grocery checkout... but that doesn't give carte blanche to freely muse about your menstrual cycle. Use a little common sense. I implore you.

Monday, April 9, 2007

Welcome to Quoibles!

(My first comment. What should it be? Should I wow the world with my style or make them laugh with my humor? Will I be rejected or embraced? Despised or sought out? Does it even make a bit of difference?)

I've long noticed that there are plenty of quirks and foibles in the universe, and I'm here to drag them out of the proverbial closet and into the public light for scrutiny. After all, what would life be without some judgmental analysis once in a while?

So let's start our journey with the following quoible:

If you're not a Catholic and you see a nun, what do you say?

On plenty of occasions, I've seen nuns in the grocery store, at retail stores, and even pumping their own gas. For years, I've hesitantly said, "Hello... sister." And, afterwards, I felt like a complete dork. I'm sure every nun I addressed in this manner knew right away that I was a heathen destined for the fiery pit of Satan's Summer Camp.

So what should you say? I don't go out of my way to address priests or rabbis in this manner. I never worry about offending a minister. But there's something about nuns that makes me a little nervous. Maybe part of me is Catholic and I just don't know it...

Until next time,

The Quoibler